In recent years, trends have been slowly shifting from disposable fashion to sustainable clothing. Organizations have been working to increase awareness about the environmental impacts of apparel development, including energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, waste production as well as labor issues.
Using recycled products contributes greatly to creating sustainable clothing. For example, recycled polyester can be created from used drinking bottles and fabrics can be made from recycled yarn. Companies are using these recycling techniques. Other companies use fabric waste generated from the production process to create their collections, calling this process up cycling rather than recycling.
In the late 1990s, the fast fashion trend boomed. Globalization allowed for production to be sent to developing nations where labor and production were cheap and abundant, but the sustainability of the clothing decreased. Brands began putting out up to 18 lines a year as opposed to the traditional two and the rate at which people were purchasing clothing dramatically increased as well as the amount of clothes that end up in landfills.
Fast fashion is a lot like fast food: the garments are cheap, quickly produced, and may be fulfilling for a short amount of time, but eventually take their toll on the environment around us, the way fast food takes a toll on the body.